ASERTTI’s Fall Meeting Focuses on Shared Public-Private Energy Technology Priorities

ASERTTI brought together dozens of experts in smart grid technology, energy storage, bioenergy research, building efficiency, CHP, and 3-D printing for its annual Fall Meeting.  This year’s meeting was co-hosted by the Washington State University Energy Program and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Seattle, Washington.
Among the major private sector presenters was a special evening event with Microsoft.  The software giant invited participants to join in a special meeting and tour of their Redmond Operations Center’s Energy Smart Buildings Project.  Visitors discussed the facilities state of the art control room and shown how the smart software extracts a layer of data for the buildings that Microsoft can use to ensure everything operates at maximum efficiency.  Microsoft also invited a representative from the City of Seattle to explain how the city has teamed up with Microsoft to conduct a similar pilot program on a select number of buildings in the downtown area.  Before wrapping up the Fall Meeting, participants had the unique opportunity to tour the Boeing Future of Flight Aviation Center to see airplanes being built for Boeing’s global base of airline customers.
Lonny Knabe, Director of Manufacturing Energy and Carbon at NIKE, Inc. was the keynote presenter for the Fall Meeting and provided an in-depth look at the global energy and sustainability activities of the Fourtune 500 athletic apparel and footwear maker.  Mr. Kabe’s presentation is available by clicking here.
Of course the primary purpose of the two-and-a-half-day event was to afford ASERTTI Members the chance to network and identify opportunities for collaboration on energy research and analysis.  New ASERTTI Members gave presentations on their organizations and current projects, including the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance, the UC-Davis California Institute of Food and Agricultural Research, the Wisconsin Energy Research Consortium, and the Iowa Energy Center.  The meeting included many other fascinating presentations, such as the New Buildings Institute’s overview of Net-Zero Building Technologies and UC-Davis CIFAR’s study on the energy-water nexus within the tomato industry in California.
For additional details on the ASERTTI 2012 Fall Meeting and to access all of the presentations delivered during the meeting, please visit:

Fall Meeting Photos

Register for the Next ASERTTI Emerging Technologies Webinar: Nov. 19

The next webinar in ASERTTI’s Emerging Technologies Webinar series, Crops for Cars: Biofuel Breakthroughs for the Transportation Sector, will be held Monday, November 19.  During the webinar, Dr. Heike Sederoff, Assistant Professor of Plant Sensory Genomics and Metabolic Engineering of Microalgae at North Carolina State University, will discuss research efforts in genetically modifying the oil-crop plant Camelina sativa to produce high quantities of both modified oils and terpenes.  Dr. Vic Knauf, Chief Scientific Officer at Arcadia Biosciences, will present on their work to develop plants that produce vegetable oil in their leaves and stems rather than in seeds; and Dr. Christer Jansson, Bioenergy Program Lead at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), will discuss LBNL’s efforts to modify tobacco to enable it to directly produce fuel molecules in its leaves for use as a biofuel.  Registration is now open online, at no cost.  Register here:
Presentation slides from past webinars in the series are available for viewing or download on ASERTTI’s website:

U.S. DoC Workshop on Building a National Network for Manufacturing Innovation

On October 18, 2012, the Advanced Manufacturing National Program Office (AMNPO), a federal interagency body, led by the U.S. Department of Commerce, held the fourth and final public workshop to gather input on the design of the proposed National Network for Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI) in Boulder, Colorado.  The workshop sought stakeholder input on NNMI technology focus areas, management and operations, and workforce development topics relating to the proposed network. ASERTTI’s Program Director was in attendance.
The NNMI concept was launched in late 2011 to coordinate federal resources and to promote collaboration on key manufacturing technology challenges and opportunities.  The first Institute for Manufacturing Innovation (IMI) pilot, National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute (NAMII), was announced in Ohio two months ago.  Additional IMIs to build the network are proposed in the president's fiscal year 2013 budget.  Next year, AMNPO will look to offer a 50/50 cost-share of $1 billion with public, private, and nonprofit stakeholders to support up to 15 IMIs across the U.S.
On May 4th, AMNPO issued a formal "request for information" (RFI) in the Federal Register, with a Oct. 25 deadline for submitting comments.  Additional details on the RFI are available here:

Advanced Energy Releases Detailed Residential Charging Station Handbook

Advanced Energy released Version 1.0 of the Residential Charging Station Installation Handbook for Single- and Multi-Family Homeowners and Renters. This new handbook will provide homeowners, renters, property managers, property owners, city/community planners, contractors and electricians with best practices to address the unique challenges of charging station selection, installation and operation at single-family residential and multi-family dwellings.

NYSERDA Awards $2 Million to Eight NY-BEST Members to Develop Advanced Energy Storage Technologies

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) awarded $250,000 to each of eight companies and research centers to develop working prototypes for a wide range of energy-storage technologies. The recipients are all members of the NY Battery and Energy Storage Technology (NY-BEST) Consortium.  According to NYSERDA’s press release, the companies and research centers will use the funding to turn energy storage technologies with proven technical feasibility into working prototypes. A working prototype is an essential step along the product commercialization path and increases a company’s opportunity to attract additional investment.  Under the terms of these awards, each recipient must match NYSERDA’s funding, leveraging NYSERDA’s $2 million with a total of $2.5 million in additional private investment.  This is the first of three rounds of funding to help members of NY-BEST move promising technologies toward commercialization. NY-BEST is an industry-focused coalition working to establish New York as a global leader in energy storage technology for heavy-duty transportation, electric grid and other storage applications.

North Carolina State University’s New 11 Megawatt Combined Heat & Power System

North Carolina State University recently completed an 11 MW combined heat and power project on campus.  The project is expected to generate $4.3 million of energy savings in the first year of operation and will increase N.C. State’s electrical and steam system efficiency by roughly 35%, reducing the University’s greenhouse gas emissions by 8%, or 33,000 CO2 equivalent metric tons. The system will be fueled by natural gas, and will include two 5.5 MW Combustion Turbines, two 50,000 PPH heat recovery steam generators, a 2,000 ton chiller and a cooling tower.  Overall the system will provide approximately 30% of a typical day’s supply of power to North and Central campus.  The project is being completed through a performance contract with Ameresco, Inc., and it will officially open and change over to N.C. State ownership on November 14, 2012.  The Clean Power and Industrial Energy Efficiency team at the N.C. Solar Center assisted with this project by providing initial project feasibility analysis and technical assistance.


DOE Announces $1 Million to Evaluate Technology Pathways for Cost-Competitive Hydrogen Fuel

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently announced new funding to evaluate the most promising technology paths toward achieving $2 to $4 per gallon gasoline equivalent (gge) of hydrogen fuel or less by 2020.  To help meet this aggressive goal by 2020, the projects selected through this program will help identify cost-effective and efficient materials and processes to produce hydrogen from renewable energy sources and natural gas. These projects will also analyze production and delivery technologies to identify key technical challenges and priorities and continue to evaluate technical progress and hydrogen cost status.  This effort will include annual analyses of key technology challenges using DOE's Hydrogen Analysis models (H2A) in addition to other industry tools.  Up to $1 million will be made available for up to two projects over 3-4 years. More information, application requirements and instructions can be found on the EERE Funding Opportunity Exchange website.  The full application submission deadline is November 8, 2012.

USDA Announces $134 Million in Smart Grid Funding

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently announced funding to modernize and improve the efficiency of rural electric generation and transmission systems.  Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced in August that USDA had met its goal to finance $250 million in smart grid technologies in fiscal year 2012. The October 11th announcement includes additional support of $134 million in smart grid technologies.  The $1.95 billion in loan guarantees announced are provided by USDA Rural Development's Rural Utilities Service. The funding helps electric utilities upgrade, expand, maintain and replace rural America's electric infrastructure. The agency also funds energy conservation and renewable energy projects.

DOI Approves Solar Energy Zones on Public Lands
The U.S. Department of Interior

The U.S. Department of Interior (DOI) recently approved a program for spurring development of solar energy on public lands in six western states. The Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) for solar energy development provides a blueprint for utility-scale solar energy permitting in Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico and Utah by establishing solar energy zones with access to existing or planned transmission, incentives for development within those zones, and a process through which to consider additional zones and solar projects.  The Solar PEIS establishes an initial set of 17 Solar Energy Zones (SEZs), totaling about 285,000 acres of public lands, that will serve as priority areas for commercial-scale solar development, with the potential for additional zones through ongoing and future regional planning processes.  Click here for a fact sheet on the Solar PEIS.  Click here for a list of the 17 Solar Energy Zones.  Click here for a map of the six-states (individual state maps available upon request).


Crops for Cars: Biofuel Breakthroughs for the Transportation Sector
ASERTTI Emerging Technology Webinar Series
Monday, November 19, 2012 – 1:00 – 2:00 PM EST

2013 NASEO/ASERTTI State Energy Policy and Technology Outlook Conference
February 5-8, 2013 – Fairmont Hotel, Washington, DC